2017-18 New York City boys basketball (through March 4)
The weekly look at the New York City metro area's PSAL, CHSAA and AIS schools for the New York State Sportswriters Association is compiled by Mike Libert:
1) Christ the King (22-5)- It was a struggle at times as they could never
break away from St. Peter's in the CHSAA Intersectional Quarterfinals on Sun-
day afternoon at Fordham University, but the Royals did just enough to advance
moving past the Eagles 59-55. The win now sends Christ the King into the semi-
finals which will be played at St. John's University on Wednesday against de-
fending champions Cardinal Hayes with the winner moving onto Sunday's title
game against either Stepinac or Archbishop Molloy.
2) Cardozo (25-3)- Falling behind 18-4 in the early going in the PSAL Class
AA Quarterfinals was far from what the Judges had in mind, but when you have
the type of perimeter shooters that Cardozo has you are never truly out of a
game as they learned on Saturday as the Judges rallied back to advance with a
60-55 victory. The Semifinals are next for Cardozo as they will take on Thomas
Jefferson there on Sunday at St. John's University for the right to play for
3) South Shore (18-8)- When you are a team as big and athletic as the Vikings
are its always going to be tough to knock them off and Paul Robeson learned
that on Saturday at the PSAL Class AA Quarterfinals as the Vikings went up early
and rolled to an easy 89-62 win that sends them now into the Semifinals. They
will meet Curtis in the semi's on Sunday at St. John's University with the win-
ner going on to play for the championship against either Cardozo or Thomas
4) Cardinal Hayes (21-7)- After struggling a bit from behind the arc leading
into the CHSAA Intersectional Quarterfinals on Sunday afternoon, the Cardinals
cleaned that up and were on target throughout shooting 11-23 from three point
range to coast to an 82-71 victory over Bishop Loughlin. The defending champions
now move onto the Semifinals on Wednesday where they will play Christ the King.
A win there and it's a matchup with either Stepinac or Archbishop Molloy for the
title on Sunday.
5) Thomas Jefferson (21-7)- After a disappointing end to the Brooklyn Borough
Playoffs where they lost to Boys and Girls, the Orange Wave are back in the PSAL
Class AA Semifinals as they easily ran past Eagle Academy on Saturday in the
quarters 56-38. Always known to be a high scoring fast paced team, Jefferson
showed their defensive stripes as they limited Eagle to a season low in points.
They will look to keep up that solid two way play on Sunday in the semi's when
the Orange Wave take on Cardozo at St. John's University.
6) Archbishop Molloy (15-12)- It's been a season of bumps and bruises and dis-
appointment for the Stanners as they have not lived up to the big preseason hype
many had for them. That all could change though now as after defeating Iona Prep
69-61 on Sunday in the CHSAA Intersectional Quarterfinals, Molloy are back in the
semis for a second straight year. They will now square off with Stepinac on Wed-
nesday night at St. John's University for the right to advance to play for the
title on Sunday afternoon in a game that could change how people judge the
7) Curtis (25-5)- Trailing for a good portion of their PSAL Class AA quarter-
final game against Abraham Lincoln, the Warriors showed guts and resilience in
converting on a final second basket to take down the defending PSAL champions
53-52. It was Curtis' first win over Lincoln in PSAL play, and it was a win that
now propels the Warriors into Sunday's semifinals where they will take on South
Shore for the right to move to Barclays Center and play for the title.
8) Boys and Girls (19-9)- Not many had expectations for the Kangaroos coming
into this season as they haven't had the success in recent seasons that they
had around 5-10 years ago. They surprised many though by getting to the Brooklyn
Borough title game and then getting all the way to the PSAL Class AA quarter-
finals before falling 60-55 in a game they led for nearly 3 quarters. It was a
disappointing end to the season but a season of rebirth for Boys and Girls as
9) St. Peter's (20-7)- Losing by just 1 in a heartbreaker in the CHSAA Arch-
diocese of New York Semifinals last week, the Eagles lost another tough one on
Sunday in the CHSAA Intersectional Quarterfinals as they had our No. 1 team
Christ the King on the ropes, leading for much of the opening half only to fall
to the Royals 59-55. It was another great effort from St. Peter's who return
four starters next year from this season's team meaning another strong year for
the Eagles could be in the cards.
10) Eagle Academy (24-5)- As champions of the Bronx in the PSAL for the first
time ever, the Eagles accomplished a goal they had no accomplished before. They
were rewarded with a high seed in the PSAL City Playoffs, and after beating
WHEELS in the Round of 16 matched up with Thomas Jefferson in the quarterfinals
on Saturday. It wasn't meant to be for Eagle Academy though as they struggled
mightily offensively in what would be a 56-38 defeat that ended the Eagles season.
11) Paul Robeson (18-11)- Having beaten the likes of South Shore, Abraham Lin-
coln, and Brooklyn Collegiate in league play this season, the Eagles proved that
when they play their best they could compete with anyone. They went on the road
this past Thursday and knocked off H.S. for Construction in a PSAL Class AA city
round of 16 game which gave them a chance at a 3rd win this season in the quarter-
finals on Saturday against South Shore. It didn't happen though as the Vikings
proved to be too tough as Robeson fell 89-62, ending what was a very strong year.
12) Abraham Lincoln (19-8)- While the Railsplitters may have closed the regular
season looking as if they were in trouble of losing early in the PSAL Class AA
City Playoffs they once again proved why you can never take them lightly. Lincoln
would breeze past Wings Academy in the Round of 16 this past Thursday, and looked
to have Curtis beaten in the quarterfinals on Saturday only to fall on a last
second shot to lose 53-52. It was a tough way to end the year but make no mistake
about it, the Railsplitters will more than likely be back stronger than ever come
13) H.S for Construction (23-6)- Playing at home in front of their home fans on
Thursday in a PSAL Class AA Round of 16 matchup against Paul Robeson, the Red
Hawks had one of their worst performances of the year as they struggled against
the size of the Eagles inside, while also missing nearly all of their attempts
from long range in what was a 54-45 season ending loss for a veteran laden Con-
struction team that will need to once again rebuild in order to keep up with the
best in the PSAL.
14) Brooklyn Collegiate (17-11)- Every time the Lions took the court you never
knew which Lions team you were going to get. They had their moments during the
regular season where they looked to be among the top teams in New York City, but
too many times they didn't flip the switch and struggled against teams they
should've never struggled against. In the PSAL Class AA Round of 16 the Lions
went to Staten Island to take on Curtis, and while Brooklyn Collegiate did play
well it wasn't enough as their season ended with a tough 79-71 defeat.
15) McKee/Staten Island Tech (16-8)- Coming in at #15 are the Seagulls as it
was almost an enormous upset in the PSAL Class AA Round of 16 as McKee/Staten
Island Tech went to Queens and led Cardozo for much of the 4th quarter. The game
would go to OT, and while the Judges would ultimately squeak out a 75-74 victory
over the Seagulls, the Staten Island school proved to be among the very best in
New York City when given the chance to play against the best.
1) Brooklyn Law and Tech (23-3)- After getting off to a 29-9 opening quarter
lead the Jets easily ran past Harry Van Arsdale in the Second Round of the PSAL
Class A City Playoffs, 78-60. The victory moves Law and Tech onto the round of
16 on Wednesday where they will take on Martin Luther King Jr. A win there and
the Jets would move to the quarterfinals on Saturday afternoon against either
Transit Tech or Flushing.
2) Lehman (23-4)- It was a tight opening half as the Lions led Port Richmond
by just nine going into halftime of their PSAL Class A City Playoffs round of
32 game on Friday night. A solid 19-6 third quarter thought saw Lehman ulti-
mately pull away for what would be a 67-41 win. The win now sends Lehman to the
round of 16 onWednesday where they will take on Erasmus Hall. Win there and it's
a Saturday quarterfinal game with either Susan Wagner or Telecommunication.
3) James Madison (21-5)- Going up against Grand Street Campus on Thursday, the
Golden Knights coasted early on to a quick double digit lead in taking care of
business 69-50. On the bottom half of the bracket, things have opened up a bit
because of upsets for Madison as they will next get Evander Childs in the round
of 16, but a quarterfinal date if they win would pit them against either Frederick
Douglass Academy or New Dorp on Saturday.
4) Roosevelt Educational Campus (21-4)- From the start against Percy E. Sutton
in the Round of 32 this past Friday it was all Roosevelt Educational as the Bears
jumped up early and never looked back in a 86-57 victory. Because of an upset
Roosevelt will next get Tottenville out of Staten Island in the round of 16 on
Tuesday at home, with either Bedford Academy or Canarsie coming after that in the
quarterfinals if they can pull out the win.
5) Nazareth (21-5)- An incredible season for the Kingsmen was topped off this
past Friday with a come from behind 58-45 victory over Fordham Prep. It was look-
ing dicey at best at halftime as Nazareth was struggling from the floor in trail-
ing 25-20, but coming alive late in the 3rd quarter saw the Kingsmen pull away
late for the championship. It's not over yet though as Nazareth will go to
Buffalo on Saturday to play for the CHSAA Class A State Championship and a berth
in the NYS Federation Tournament of Champions against The Park School.
6) Transit Tech (19-5)- Having stayed under the radar for a lot of the regular
season, the Express seem to be picking up steam at just the right time as they
confidently pushed past Hillcrest on Friday in Round of 32 contest 80-57. After
taking a 14 point lead after one quarter it was all Transit Tech the rest of the
way. The win puts the Express into the round of 16 against Flushing with another
matchup with Brooklyn Law and Tech awaiting in the quarterfinals on Saturday with
7) Susan Wagner (19-8)- Trailing by 7 going into the 4th quarter the Falcons
were without question on the ropes. They were able to show a lot of grit and
character down the stretch outscore Fort Hamilton in the 4th quarter 20-10 to
come away with a come from behind 63-60 win. The win keeps Wagner at home in the
round of 16 on Tuesday where they will play Telelcommunication before a possible
quarterfinal contest on Saturday against Lehman.
8) Evander Childs (18-7)- Close for most of the way, the Tigers would pull
away in the closing quarter for a 76-65 in over Midwood on Thursday to send
Evander Childs back into the Round of 16 once again this year. Awaiting them
will be a road game on Wednesday against James Madison in what looks on paper
to be one of the better and more competitive matchups of the round. If they can
get the win there next would either be Frederick Douglass Academy or New Dorp on
Saturday in the quarterfinals.
9) Fordham Prep (18-9)- Nothing but credit to the Rams who lost so much from
last season's team and still managed to have a special season. They were able to
get past Msgr. Farrell in a tight contest in the CHSAA Class A City semifinals
on Tuesday 46-41, giving them a date for the title on Friday night against top-
seeded Nazareth. Fordham Prep led by 5 going into halftime but the athleticism
and shooting of Nazareth eventually wore the Rams down as their season ended
with a 58-45 title game defeat.
10) Bedford Academy (19-7)- Talent wise there has been no doubt that the Pan-
thers are among the best team in Class A, and they have been all season long.
The issues were consistency which ultimately pushed them to being a 19 seed in
the PSAL playoffs. They got an opening round home win and then followed that up
with a Round of 32 win on the road at Grady 59-58. That victory pushes the Pan-
thers into the Round of 16 on Wednesday against another underdog in Canarsie.
Win that and it's off to the quarterfinals for Bedford against Roosevelt Edu-
cational or Tottenville on Saturday.
Honorable Mention: Frederick Douglass Academy (16-9), Erasmus Hall (18-6),
Flushing (24-5), Telecommunication (19-7), St. Joseph by the Sea (14-11).
1) Maspeth (26-2)- As the top seed in the PSAL Class B City Playoffs a lot are
expected out of the Argonauts this postseason. They almost came to a screeching
halt in the Round of 32 this past Friday when Maspeth needed OT to get past a
tough Urban Dove Charter team 85-82. Proving that they can score with anyone,
the Argonauts will need to defend better as they move on in the playoffs with
Brooklyn College Academy coming up next at home on Tuesday in the round of 16.
2) Fannie Lou Hamer (23-4)- Seeded #2 in the playoffs, Fannie Lou jumped out
to a 33-14 halftime lead over Spring Creek Campus on Friday in a round of 32
game, never looking back the rest of the way in a 60-36 victory. It was a solid
way to open their playoff run as the Panthers will look to keep advancing when
they hit the court on Wednesday in the Round of 16 against Achievement First
School of Brooklyn.
3) Community Health Academy of the Heights (22-3)- Another team that jumped out
quick early in the Round of 32, Community Health held Cobble Hill School score-
less through the first quarter, only allowing 6 opening half points in what was
a 65-29 convincing win over their overmatched opponents. Looking to carry that
strong play into the Round of 16, Community Health Academy of the Heights will
next host Adams Street Academy.
4) BCAM (17-3)- One of the more potent offensive teams in Class B this season,
BCAM proved their ability to run and push and score in bunches in the round of
32 as they played host to Chelsea. The Lions scored 42 points in the opening
half to take a 15 point lead to ultimately cruise to a 78-50 win. The round of
16 should present a solid test as BCAM will match up with one of the better de-
fensive teams in Class B on Wednesday when the Lions host Eagle Academy III.
5) Regis (18-8)- It was tough to predict this playoff run for the Raiders as
coming into the CHSAA Class B City Playoffs Regis had lost two in a row and we're
looking shaky as the #3 seed heading in. They started to look better with a quar-
terfinal 9 point win over Salesian, then came a surprising 17 point victory over
a strong Sacred Heart team, and then on Friday it was all culminated with a de-
fensive masterpiece in a 44-42 victory over our previous #1 team in LaSalle
Academy. The win now sends Regis into the CHSAA Class B state championship game
which takes place on Sunday against Niagara Catholic at Villa Maria College in
6) LaSalle Academy (21-3)- Without question the top team in Class B for most
of the season, the Cardinals looked poised to win a second straight CHSAA Class
B title. They were winners of 15 in a row and didn't lose a CHSAA game all sea-
son long. They did struggle against Moore Catholic in the semifinals needing a
buzzer beater to advance, but against Regis, a team they defeated by 9 just 14
days before there was no magic left as LaSalle fell 44-42, ending their season
one win short of their ultimate goal of yet another CHSAA title.
7) Medgar Evers College Prep (16-4)- Maybe it wasn't the prettiest of games
but give Medgar Evers credit as even not playing their best they still found a
way to take down Academy of American Studies in the PSAL Class B round of 32,
46-31 on Friday night. The Cougars never trailed in the game, and limited their
opponents to just 10 second half points as they showed in style their strong de-
fensive prowess. After an upset it will be NEST+M in the Round of 16 for Medgar
Evers on Tuesday at home as they look to continue their playoff journey.
8) Bronx School for Law, Government, & Justice (20-1)- As the bigger and more
dominant team inside, the Jaguars used their size to their advantage on Friday
in the Round of 32 against Leon Goldstein as they made sure to get the ball in
the paint on nearly every possession in what would be a comfortable 62-49 win
that Law, Government, & Justice led from start to finish. Pace awaits next for
the Jaguars in the Round of 16 on Wednesday in a game that should see Law, Gov-
ernment, & Justice be able to use their size advantage once again.
9) South Bronx Prep (17-10)- Because of their challenging non-league schedule
during the regular season where they played 5 Class AA teams it was clear enter-
ing the Class B playoffs that the Cougars were nothing if not battle tested. They
did find themselves in a fight though as South Bronx Prep trailed EBC/Bushwick
Leaders by 3 heading into the 4th quarter of their Round of 32 PSAL game on
Thursday. A strong finish would propel them to a 67-57 win though as they now
get Cambria Heights Academy out of Queens in the upcoming Round of 16 on Tuesday.
10) Collegiate (17-11)- To the Dutchmen's credit they gave it their all in the
NYSAIS Class B title game this past Monday against a bigger, stronger, and deeper
Lawrence Woodmere Academy team. Collegiate was within single digits the entire
way, and even had a couple of chances to tie the game up in the 4th quarter be-
fore ultimately falling 51-44 just short of their goal of a championship. It was
a heartbreaking way to end, but Collegiate had a good amount of youth and should
be back even stronger next season.